Sanctuary of Grace
v.1 tzaddik – God invites Noach “Come into the ark, you and your household.” Noach needed to RSVP. What common Christian misconceptions are held about righteousness in the OT versus the NT? Salvation is a gift! It cannot be earned by works.
—Why was Noach saved? Grace is not a NT concept. “But Noach found grace in the sight of ADONAI” (6:8). Noach was set apart from the rest of his generation as righteous (tzaddik), especially the N’filim who had corrupted mankind (6:5).
—God does not destroy the good along with the wicked!
v.2-3 clean/unclean = pure/impure 7 pairs of clean (tahor) animals. 1 pair of unclean (tamei) animals.
In the case of animal sacrifices, only clean animals may be used. In the case of food, only clean animals may be eaten (kosher). Up to this point, the only suitable food was plant life (7:21). When the Bible speaks of food, it refers only to the things God told man he could eat. Prior to the Flood, to Noach, clean and unclean simply meant animals that God told him were suitable for sacrifice and those that weren’t—food wasn’t part of the equation.
v.4-12 Floodwaters It was not just rain! “…all the fountains of the great deep (tehom) were broken up, and the windows (arubbah) of the sky were opened.” [v.11] This underwater cavern, or network of caverns, that had up to that point been filled with water, now spewed out onto the surface. The firmament (raqia) opened it’s windows to allow the celestial waters above it to be dumped on the earth and join with the terrestrial and subterranean waters to flood the entire face of the earth.
“The Great Deep” We’ve encountered the term the great deep back in Genesis 1. Could it be that this great deep, being emptied of its water to judge the world with a flood, was readied to judge HaSatan? In Revelation we are told that HaSatan will be thrown into the Abyss (the abussos), same word for the great deep.
v.13-24 shut in How many people entered the ark? Eight is the number of redemption throughout the Bible. “Those that entered the ark, male and female of all flesh, entered as God commanded, and ADONAI shut him inside”(v.16). Noach and all inside had become the object of divine care and protection, while to those outside the season of grace was over.
v.1-5 zakar God remembered Noach…To “remember” in this context doesn’t mean a collection of fond memories by God. Rather, it implies focussing on the object of memory, which then results in positive action. God remembers…and then God does something!
God caused a WIND ruach to pass over the flood-filled earth. We get a glimpse of a sort of regenesis of earth.
v.6-14 raven & doves – The raven (scavenger/unclean) survives on a broad range of food types. If any food was available outside the ark, the raven could survive. A dove (clean) is much more selective in its food choices. The dove’s choice of food would indicate that new life had begun to grow…then Noach and his family could also survive outside the ark.
olive leaf Doves don’t eat olive leaves, which are bitter and have no nutritional value. The only reason the dove collected the olive leaf was to build a nest—a new home in a world renewed after the Flood.
The Flood as Shadow of the Living Water This Flood that destroys the old would also purify and make way for the new. Death of the corrupted was needed in order to prepare for new life. This is a type and a shadow of what is to come. **Messiah Yeshua is called the Living Water in the NT.
v.15-22 Out from the ark God commands Noach to take his wife, his sons and their wives, and all the living things and go out of the ark…let the families swarm and fill the earth, be fruitful and multiply on the earth.
Noach’s sacrifice Noach built an altar to God and took of every species of animal and bird as a burnt-offering. God accepted Noach’s sacrifices and found them pleasing. God was never again going to destroy all land-inhabiting creatures in the way He had just done.
—ADONAI said in his heart “I will never again curse the ground because of humankind, since the imaginings (yetzer) of a person’s heart are evil (rah) from his youth (mine’araw)” [v.21]
Because Noach trusted and obeyed God, God declared Noach tzaddik. This most fundamental principle of salvation—trusting God and being credited (as opposed to earning) righteousness—is the same today as here in the OT, in Genesis!